My Dear Lads:
This story is complete in itself but forms volume three of a line known under the general title of “Boy Hunters Series,” and taking in adventures in the field, the forest, and on the river and lake, both in winter and summer.
The boys of these stories are bright, wide-awake lads of to-day, with a taste for rod and shotgun, and a life in the open air. They know a good deal about fishing and how to shoot, and camp life is no new thing to them. In the first volume, entitled, “Four Boy Hunters,” they organize a little club of four members and go forth for a summer vacation. They have such good times that, when Winter comes on, they resolve to go camping again, and do so, as related in the second volume, called “Guns and Snowshoes.” In that story they fall victims to a blizzard, and spend a most remarkable Christmas; but, of course, all ends happily.
In the present story, summer is once more at hand, and again the boy hunters venture forth, this time bound for a large lake a good many miles from their home town. They have a jolly cruise on the water, fall in with a very peculiar old hermit, and are molested not a little by some rivals. They likewise follow up two bears, and are treated to a ghost scare calculated to make anybody’s hair stand on end. What the ghost proved to be I leave the pages which follow to reveal.
As I have said before, good hunting, especially in our eastern states, is fast becoming a thing of the past. In some sections only small game can be had and even then the eager hunter has to travel many miles sometimes for a shot.
Trusting that all boys who love the woods and waters, a rod, a gun and a restful camp will enjoy reading this volume, I remain,
Your sincere friend, Captain Ralph Bonehill.
FOUR LIVELY BOYS
“Boys, I’m going swimming. Who is going along?”
“Count me in, Snap,” answered Shep Reed.
“Swimming?” came from a third youth of the crowd of four. “Why, you couldn’t keep me away if you tried. I’ve been waiting for a swim for about eleven years-----”
“And a day,” broke in a small, stout youth. “Don’t forget the day, Whopper, if you want to be really truthful.
“All right, put in the day,” cheerfully assented the lad called Whopper, because of his propensity to exaggerate when speaking. “Of course you’ll go, too, Giant?” he added, questioningly.
“Will I?” answered the small youth. “Will a duck swim and a cow eat clover? To be sure I’ll go. But I’ll have to run home first and tell mother.”
“I’ll have to go home, too,” said the lad called Snap. “But I can be back here in a quarter of an hour.”
“Where shall we go?” asked Shep Reed.
“I was thinking of going up to Lane’s Cove,” answered Snap Dodge.